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Commentary

Brooks: Why is Capitalism a Dirty Word 4-15-15

This is Arthur Brooks of the American Enterprise Institute for Townhall.com.

The free enterprise system is certainly not perfect, but is has pulled two billion people away from starvation since I was a child in the 1970s.

And yet, capitalism is still a dirty word all over the world.

Why’s this?

It’s because, historically speaking, until only a few hundred years ago, the truth was that when the rich got richer, the poor really did get poorer. Me having more meant you had less.

With capitalism, for the first time in human history, we have an economic system that is what we can call “positive sum.” What it means that everybody can have more. Nobody loses.

Proponents of capitalism have failed to explain this and they’ve failed to explain why it matters. It matters because capitalism pulls people out of poverty.

We should all be morally dedicated to using capitalism always, everywhere, every single day to the good of people who have the least in society, the people who have the least power.

I’m Arthur Brooks.

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Davenport: Religious Conscience vs. Gay Rights 4-14-15

This is David Davenport of the Hoover Institution for Townhall.com.

It appears that in Indiana and eventually everywhere, we are about to throw out the baby with the bathwater. In the name of expanding and securing gay rights under the 14th Amendment, we are prepared to give up people’s religious rights under the 1st Amendment. This is both unfortunate and unnecessary.

The hard case is the individual baker, photographer, florist or caterer whose religious beliefs hold that marriage is between a man and a woman and cannot in good conscience participate in gay marriage. On the other hand, the law increasingly says same-sex marriage is legally protected.

In a clash of constitutional rights, courts must decide. It seems like there is room to uphold gay marriage while allowing those who perform personal services and whose religious beliefs do not allow for gay marriage to decline to participate.

Gay rights advocates won’t like that, but the harm of finding a different baker seems less than forcing someone to violate religious conscience.

I’m David Davenport.

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Hewitt: Kill the Deal 4-13-15

This is Hugh Hewitt for Townhall.com.

It’s springtime and Americans have so many wonderful diversions from a world that horrifies far more often than it entertains.

In recent days we’ve had the NCAA basketball championship, Opening Day for Major League Baseball and, after all, the Masters. This is also the season of college admissions, proms and graduations. I’m as guilty as the rest, gleefully tweeting through the basketball games and studying up on the mock drafts.

But in reality, only the world crisis and its end game will matter when it comes down to it—or more precisely, the pastimes and culture of America in the early third millennium will be of interest to historians a hundred years out only if the barbarians do not swarm over the gates or, worse yet, incinerate them.

The debate over the president’s framework of an agreement with Iran will be an excellent forecast of what our world will look like in the future. Serious people have to do all they can to kill the deal.

I’m Hugh Hewitt.

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Davenport: A Liberty Moment 4-10-15

This is David Davenport of the Hoover Institution for Townhall.com.

The controversy over religious rights in Indiana presents an important “liberty moment” when the lights come on and we recognize that big government is in fact out to take away our freedoms.

Remember the promise about health care? If you like your policy, Obamacare won’t hurt you, you just keep your private policy. But no, millions of those policies were in fact declared illegal by Obamacare and people had to buy more expensive policies with mandatory coverages like pregnancy insurance for young males, they didn’t want or need.

That was the promise of same-sex marriage: It won’t hurt or affect anyone, it’s just extending a right for two people who want to marry. But no, in Indiana, Arkansas and elsewhere, it turns out that bakers, photographers, florists and caterers whose owners’ religious beliefs do not permit them to participate in gay marriage ceremonies must either violate their religious conscience or give up their business.

Attention 2016 voters: this is a liberty moment.

I’m David Davenport.

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Mohler Religious Liberty: Defined Out 4-7-15

https://soundcloud.com/the-weekend-journal/hewitt-democracy-in-the-face-of-radical-islam

This is Hugh Hewitt for Townhall.com

Boko Haram is the arm of Islamist terror that strikes regularly in the African nation of Nigeria. It has killed more than 20,000 people in savage attacks over the last two years and destroyed countless lives as the terror it has sown has led to massive flight and panic.

Nigeria has nevertheless just held free and fair elections. Their new leader—an old general who had once ruled after a coup for 20 months—won with 54 percent of the vote. His opponent, the incumbent president, called to congratulate the incoming winner and Nigeria is about to witness its first peaceful transfer of power from a defeated incumbent to a freely elected challenger. This is an extraordinary and good thing for the world to see.

Terrorist atrocities of the worst sort are calling forth renewed commitments to freedom and democracy, not the opposite. Nigeria follows America and Israel and other free countries in refusing to bow to the terrorists’ demands for capitulation. We are thankful for the candidates’ courage and the courage of their fellow citizens.

I’m Hugh Hewitt.

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Hewitt: Democracy in the Face of Radical Islam 4-8-15

https://soundcloud.com/the-weekend-journal/hewitt-democracy-in-the-face-of-radical-islam

This is Hugh Hewitt for Townhall.com

Boko Haram is the arm of Islamist terror that strikes regularly in the African nation of Nigeria. It has killed more than 20,000 people in savage attacks over the last two years and destroyed countless lives as the terror it has sown has led to massive flight and panic.

Nigeria has nevertheless just held free and fair elections. Their new leader—an old general who had once ruled after a coup for 20 months—won with 54 percent of the vote. His opponent, the incumbent president, called to congratulate the incoming winner and Nigeria is about to witness its first peaceful transfer of power from a defeated incumbent to a freely elected challenger. This is an extraordinary and good thing for the world to see.

Terrorist atrocities of the worst sort are calling forth renewed commitments to freedom and democracy, not the opposite. Nigeria follows America and Israel and other free countries in refusing to bow to the terrorists’ demands for capitulation. We are thankful for the candidates’ courage and the courage of their fellow citizens.

I’m Hugh Hewitt.

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Hewitt: The First Freedom in the 21st Century 4-6-15

https://soundcloud.com/the-weekend-journal/hewitt-the-first-freedom-in-the-21st-century

This is Hugh Hewitt for Townhall.com.

Indiana’s Religious Freedom Restoration Act and its governor Mike Pence have been criticized by all the usual suspects using all the usual flawed arguments. Not a single case of discrimination has been cited nor can critics of the new law point to a single instance of discrimination in the District of Columbia in the 22 years the federal law has been effect in that federal city.

This is, after all, theater … political theater—and of the worst sort. Bravo to Jeb Bush, Marco Rubio, Ted Cruz and others who have stood with Governor Pence on behalf of religious freedom and who explained, patiently and without overheated rhetoric that this country must remain strong in its commitment to religious liberty and tolerance. Laws like those in Indiana and now Arkansas must—along with the dozens of others across the country—be seen as pivotal to maintaining an America welcoming of all people and tolerant of all views including those based on Scripture and practiced continuously since religious freedom became the first freedom enshrined in our Bill of Rights.

I’m Hugh Hewitt.

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